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Siegal Lifelong Learning

History + Culture

History + Culture

Tuesdays, January 31–April 25 | 1:30–3:30 p.m.

No class March 7 and 14

Kenneth Ledford, Associate Professor of History and Law, Case Western Reserve University


At the end of World War II, western European political leaders embarked upon a project of European integration as an economic and political project to maintain European independence between the superpowers of the United States and the Soviet Union and a neo-liberal economic project to spur economic growth to maintain the welfare state. From modest beginnings of the European Coal and Steel Community in 1952, the European Union emerged in the twenty-first century as an impressive economic power with its own currency. But limits on the political integration of Europe, resurgent nationalism and populism, challenges from economic crises and refugee crises, and the first effort by a Member State to withdraw from the EU all seem to call the project of European integration into question. This course will explore the origins and evolution of the European Union, its structure and functioning including limits to its powers, and forecast its future in the face of its manifold challenges.

The College Club of Cleveland | Members: $115; Nonmembers: $135 | REGISTER >


Week 1:  
EU History Lecture Spring 2017 Week 1 Class notes       
Senior Scholars European Union Spring 2017 Week 1 January 31 Powerpoint
Week 2:
EU History Lecture Spring 2017 Week 2 Class notes
Senior Scholars European Union Spring 2017 Week 2 February 7 Powerpoint

Week 3:
EU History Lecture Spring 2017 Week 3 Notes
Senior Scholars European Union Spring 2017 Week 3 February 14 Powerpoint

Week 4:
EU History Lecture Spring 2017 Week 4 Notes 
Senior Scholars European Union Spring 2017 Week 4 February 21 Powerpoint

Week 5:
EU History Lecture Spring 2017 Week 5 Notes  
Senior Scholars European Union Spring 2017 Week 5 Powerpoint

Tuesdays, February 7-March 28 | 1–3 p.m.


Leatrice Rabinsky, Lecturer in Lifelong Learning, CWRU


Learn of the faith, love, and despair of the Jewish youth and minorities facing Nazi deceit and savagery.


Landmark Centre | Members: $90; Nonmembers: $110 | REGISTER >

Mondays, March 20 - May 8 | 1 -2:30 p.m.

Enid Kirtz, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies

A Bloomsbury take on Victorian England featuring the Queen and the attitudes toward education, church, army (Florence Nightingale) and General Gordon. These issues still resonate in society today. Participants will explore these serious topics with a humorous approach. Books: L. Strachey, Eminent Victorians and L. Strachey, Queen Victoria

Rocky River Public Library | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >


Thursdays, March 23–May 11 | 10-11:30 a.m.


Jim Van Horn, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies


In this book discussion course, students, will talk about how Bill Bryson re-visits a unique era in American history, the 20s, sandwiched in between World War I and the Depression. He writes about familiar personalities and events--Charles Lindbergh, Babe Ruth, Al Capone, Herbert Hoover--and some not so well-known people and captures the magic of a special time.  Book: Bill Bryson, One Summer: America 1927


Landmark Centre | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >

Thursdays, March 23–May 11 | 10–11:30 a.m.


Betty Zak, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies


Nicholas and Alexandra have been called saints, innocent victims, harbingers of revolution among many other names. What really happened? Was it a love that extended beyond each other? Was it a love that ended an empire? Discover their passion, their strengths and their weaknesses in a new light. We begin with the traditional reading of Massie's Nicholas and Alexandra followed by summaries of newly Russian released documents involving Rasputin, Alix and Nicky and Alexandra's lady-in- waiting. We'll then extrapolate possibilities through our second book. Books: Robert Massie, Nicholas and Alexandra; Robert Alexander, The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of the Last Tsar


Westlake United Methodist Church| Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >

Fridays, March 24-May 12 | 10:30 a.m.-noon

Pamela Belknap, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies


As a young social worker, Frances Perkins witnessed the traumatic Triangle Shirtwaist fire of 1911, which killed 146 workers. She immediately became an activist, as well as a lifelong advocate for critical reforms and programs. Learn how Labor Secretary Perkins teamed with FDR to create the New Deal legislation, which continues today. Books: The Woman Behind the New Deal – The Life and Legacy of Frances Perkins – Social Security, Unemployment Insurance, and the Minimum Wage, Kirstin Downey; The Roosevelt I Knew, Frances Perkins (Penguin Classics)


St. Paul's Episcopal Christ | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >

Tuesdays, March 28–May 2 | 7–9 p.m.

No class April 11 or 18

Brian Amkraut, Executive Director, Siegal Lifelong Learning, CWRU

This course begins with an examination of the origins of what has been called “the oldest hatred,” and moves through history, to conclude with the challenges confronting Jews today. Along the way, we examine the shifting paradigms of antisemitic expression including: xenophobia, religious conflict, “scientific” racism, as well as the current forms prevalent in America and around the world.

Landmark Centre, Room 121 | Members: $60; Nonmembers: $75 | REGISTER >


Tuesdays, April 25-May 30 | 1–3 p.m.

Leatrice Rabinsky, Lecturer in Lifelong Learning, CWRU


In the forests, ghettos, and concentration camps, pockets of rebels resisted the Nazis by stealing uniforms and arms. Victims built secret tunnels, arranged aid from the outside, and served to encourage the weak.


Landmark Centre | Members: $90; Nonmembers: $110 | REGISTER >

Fridays April 28-May 19 | 10-11:30 a.m.

Alanna Cooper, Director of Jewish Lifelong Learning, CWRU


Shortly after the Soviet Union dissolved, cultural anthropologist Alanna Cooper traveled to Uzbekistan to learn about the Jewish community that had been living there for over a millennia. There, in the heart of Central Asia, she recorded stories about life on the margins of the Jewish world; about living as a minority among a predominantly Muslim population; and about remaining Jewish through the Soviet period. After that first visit, Alanna was hooked and spent the next fifteen years researching and writing as she traveled between Uzbekistan, immigrant communities in New York and Tel Aviv, and library archives. Join her for a fascinating perspective on Jewish history and culture.


Landmark Centre | Members: $60; Nonmembers: $75 | REGISTER >